My husband I attended the Natural Products Expo West trade show again this year. The amount of new gluten free products was just overwhelming. We weren’t able to visit every booth which carried gluten free products. Last year we covered them all. It is just amazing how many manufacturers added a gluten free product line. In 2011 there were several manufacturers asking me about how to get their products gluten free certified, however this year, 2012, was a totally different story. All the booths I visited were very versed in the subject of gluten free. It was so refreshing. Though some manufacturers chose to state that there products were gluten free, though no testing or certification is ever done. Their justification? “There are no laws governing gluten free labeling.” It is definitely time, actually overdue, for the FDA to finalize gluten free labeling!
New Gluten Free Products
Though some of the popular gluten free companies had nothing new this year, they definitely have products worth mentioning which I have added below. Enjoy!
Udi’s Gluten Free Foods – Their newest products to soon be released is their Plain Vanilla Cupcakes; 2 rolls – green seeded and classic arch. Other new products from Udi’s includes: frozen pizzas – margherita, pepperoni and 3 cheese available at most Whole Foods; brownie bites; and cupcake dinner rolls. I must say the cupcake dinner rolls are extremely light! Additional newly released products consist of Blueberry Oat Muffin Tops, Chocolate Chia Muffin Tops, and Omega Flax and Fiber Bread.
Enjoy Life Foods – Plentils – Lentil chips in 4 flavors! – Garlic and Parmesan, Light Sea Salt, Margherita Pizza, and Dill & Sour Cream. They are primarily made from lentil powder and potato starch. These are awesome chips! They do not taste like bean flour at all, which is a nice change compared to most chips made from legumes. And they are so light and airy; nothing like a bean chip or a corn chip. I taste-tested the Margherita Pizza flavor. Just wnderful! Note that these chips are not only gluten free, but dairy free and allergy free! That’s all Enjoy Life does.
Go Raw – If you’ve ever tasted Go Raw’s delicious raw chocolate truffles, and seem to cannot find them lately, note they have new packaging. Meanwhile the newest products tested, but not yet released, at Expo West were Apple and Cinnamon Granola Bar; Chocolate Granola Bar; and the same 2 in granola. All new granola bars are made without agave, but sweetened naturally with dates. That’s all I can think of is that’s an all natural bar! Yum!
Purely Elizabeth Gluten Free Granola – My husband fell in love with their granola. It is gluten free certified at under 10ppm (parts per million). They are well known for their using alternative, nutrient rich grains along with superfood seeds; products are free of refined sugar, dairy, gluten and soy; they’re certified vegan; have no artificial flavors, colors, sweeteners, preservatives or gmo’s; and low on the glycemic index or have no sugar at all. Now that’s a granola! But the main thing is that they taste the best, and now we know we know why.
YC Chocolate Stevia Bars – The Cadenza Bars contain a high quality 70% dark chocolate sweetened with Stevia. They are available in the following flavors: Pure Dark Chocolate, Dark Chocolate with Whole Roasted Almonds, Dark Chocolate with Cocoa Nibs, Dark Chocolate with Tart Montmorency Cherries, and Dark Chocolate with Ginger. I wasn’t able to obtain a sample, but all of the reviews I have read basically, and often exactly, state, “This is the best sugar-free chocolate I’ve ever tasted!” Everyone who cannot stand the bitter taste of stevia enjoys this chocolate, as it is nothing like what you are used to. People would never know it contains stevia unless you told them. That’s all the buzz I’ve read. Give it a try and judge for yourself. I can’t wait!
Dagoba Organic Chocolate – Though not new, this high quality chocolate is to die for! It is a subsidiary of The Hershey Company. They make chocolate bars, baking chocolate, chocolate drinks, tasting squares and professional chocolate. So yummy! And they test at 0ppm (parts per million) for gluten cross-contamination. Hershey will not label anything gluten free unless there is truly zero gluten!
King Arthur’s Gluten Free – You may have heard of this brand before, but when visiting their booth, I asked what their products usually test at for gluten cross-contamination and they stated their testing was usually at 3%. That’s excellent considering other products test at less than 20%, 10% and 5%, or are not tested at all! Their gluten free products (they make other products, too) are gluten free certified under 10%ppm; made in a dedicated gluten-free facility; and their factory is free from wheat, nuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, eggs, and dairy. And to top if off, these products are Kosher certified. I was given a box of the Whole Flax Seed. I was so excited because nothing gives me more pleasure than grinding my own seeds and grains. They are more nutrient rich. Of course you can leave them whole for a nutty flavor in baked goods, but their full health benefits, grind them a coffee grinder. Just plain ole healthy! They have quite a few gluten free mixes, as well. Definitely click on their link above, as they give some great pointers on how to use gluten free flours.
Kinnikinnick – New products coming soon: Soft Gluten Free White Bread, Soft Gluten Free Multi-Grain Bread, Gluten Free Thin Pizza Crust, and Gluten Free Pie Crust. Check most of them out at the link above.
Glutino – They will be releasing their new flavor of Bagel Chips: Cinnamon! They taste like French toast, to me! So yummy! And if you haven’t check out their new full size, light, gluten free breads. Do so now – as well as their other great gluten free products!
NuGo Slim is NuGo’s newest product, though not brand new. It’s real dark chocolate! Flavors: Brownie Crunch, Roasted Peanut, and Raspberry Truffle. Needless to say, the Chocolate Brownie Crunch is my fave, Can’t live without my chocolate! The difference between regular NuGo bars and Nugo Slim is that the Slim is almost sugar-free, high in fiber and protein. And they’re certified gluten free!
Think Thin – You may have already tasted their traditional bars, usually creamy and chewy. Well, their newest product is the Brownie Crunch Protein Bar! Nothing like texture with some crunch. What would we do without all of the textures foods provide? Gotta love this one!
Pamela’s Products – Their new products rolling out soon are gluten free pizza crust and oatmeal cookies! Stay tuned for the announcement on when they hit the stores.
The Pro Bar – Natural, wholesome, organic, and their gluten free line of Fruition Pro Bars are labeled as a superfood snack. The newest flavor is Chocolate Orange, but is also available in Lemon, Cherry, Strawberry, Blueberry, Peach and CranRaspberry. gluten free! These bars are certified gluten free and test at under 10ppm (parts per million) for gluten cross-contamination. My hubby gives it a 7, on a scale from 1-10, only because he likes crunch bars. This one is soft and chewy. That’s my type of bar. I give it a 10!
Golden Valley Natural – This was all-time favorite gluten free snack from Expo West! A 40 year old company that has a line of Organic Beef Jerky which focuses on using natural, organic ingredients from hormone-free beef, and of course, they’re gluten free. One of their slogans is “Just one bag and you’ll be hooked!” is so true. I ate some on the way home from the show, and they were not only tasty, but so fresh and soft, yet you still need to rip off a piece! I tasted the Black Pepper and let me tell you, it is the best beef jerky I have ever had! Their Organic Beef Jerky is available in Original, Pepper, Teriyaki, Sweet N Spicy, and BBQ flavor. The only flavor of their Turkey Jerky that is gluten free is the BBQ flavor. Just note, they contain soy (soy sauce). However, there are no preservatives, erythorbate, nitrite, or MSG. It’s only minimally processed, low-fat and made in the U.S.! Free shipping on orders over $35 or $5.35 for small orders. Note: Not all of their beef jerky is gluten free. Watch their video. When asked how they prevent gluten cross-contamination they replied in their last email communication, “The USDA does not inspect for allergens because there are no regulations that disallow the use of food ingredients that produces intolerance in certain people. However, FSIS has policies in place and strongly encourages the use of allergen statements consistent with the Food Allergens Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA). Allergens, particularly the “big-8″ (i.e., milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans) are a public health concern. It is required to list the above items in an ingredient statement but a separate allergen statement is not required but encouraged. [In] answer to your question, the USDA does not inspect for allergens, and barley and rye are not listed as a major allergen. They do check labels and label approvals and match them up with production to make sure they match. If one of the eight allergens are not listed on a label and is used in production there most likely would be a recall for misbranding. We do not use barley or rye in our facility at this time and we do not test for it, however how we make sure there is no cross contamination of gluten; we have several procedures. First we always produce gluten free products after our extensive cleaning of our facility. We also swab test the area to verify that there is no gluten on contact areas. [Our] quality control is inspecting and verify at all times that we are following all procedures. I hope this information was helpful.”
Read Part 2 of New Gluten Free Products 2012.